Monday, February 28, 2011

Heroes and Villains of the Spectrum - the Rest

There are a lot of characters who choose red, green, or black for their names, but the rest of the colors are a little cheated. Here is our final list of "color name" characters, filling the gaps from the colors I've missed...

Booster Gold

Now called "The Greatest Hero You've Never Heard Of", Booster Gold's image has changed dramatically since he got his latest series.

He was little more than a walking joke--a self-absorbed hero--until the events of the DC maxi-series 52 kicked him square into the spotlight and killed him...before bringing him back again. 

Now Gold goes through time changing what he can and fixing the little anomalies that pop up here and there. I've followed the series since the first issue and I can honestly say it's one of the best I read now. Each storyline seems consistently strong, and the fact that Blue Beetle still pops up from time to time makes it that much better.

Bronze Tiger

Originally a member of the Suicide Squad, Bronze Tiger started out as a villain before becoming the anti-hero he is today.

Recently he battled Catman to the brink of death for both of them, and I have to give him credit on that. DC has upped Catman's cred a lot with recent storylines, and letting Bronze Tiger keep up with him shows the respect they still have for the character.

In one alternate universe, he was a character called "Blackwing", their version of Batman. That would mean he was the only character who made it onto two lists...but I didn't think that would be fair since he was only Blackwing for the one issue.

Silver Sable

She's bad, she's a secret agent, and she has her own minimate! Not bad for a kind of obscure character!

She has tangled with Spider-Man on more than one occasion and sometimes it's hard to see which side she's playing on. For the most part, however, she usually leans toward the good guy angle. She's not above twisting the law where needed though.

Currently, she leads her own group of highly-trained heroes and mercs wherever the money leads

White Tiger

Hector Ayala was the first major Puerto Rican superhero way back in the 70's. Using the magic amulets of the Sons of the Tiger, he became a martial arts madhouse with one of the simplest costumes every created. Since he made his debut in the "Deadly Hands of Kung Fu" magazine and it was black and white, he was a perfect fit.

Eventually he moved into the "Spectacular Spider-Man" title and was a regular for the first 50 issues or so. When his secret identity was revealed on television, his family became a target. Cancer began to kill him as well, so he gave up the amulets to face his sickness on his own.

Hector was killed in Daredevil a few years ago after being framed for murder, and is replaced now by Angela Del Toro.

Purple Man

A more sinister guy you'd be hard to find. Anything he tells you to do, you're going to do it. He's been around for a long time, but it was the 2000's that saw him become the truly twisted person you'd think he would be.

He started and stayed as a Daredevil villain for a long time, able to control anyone and force them to do whatever he wanted. He held Jessica Jones for a long time as a personal servant until she finally escaped during a battle with the Scarlet Witch.

A very short stint with the Thunderbolts saw him returned to the Raft. Once there, Luke Cage got the opportunity to settle the score for what Purple Man had done to the woman who eventually became his wife. It wasn't pretty.


Does it really count as a color-named hero when your name is one word? Yeah, it's close enough. Hank Pym has had many different identities, but the most infamous would have to be Yellowjacket.

He started out in this identity claiming to have killed Hank Pym and eventually marrying the Wasp before getting his memory back. Then when he was forced out of the Avengers it was again as this character.

After Janet's tragic death in "Secret Invasion", Hank decided to become his own version of the Wasp as a tribute to her. To most comic book readers, however, he'll pretty much always be remembered as either Yellowjacket or Ant-Man.

Silver Surfer

Herald of Galactus on more than one occasion, the Silver Surfer has been more of a tragic hero than anything else since his introduction. Trapped for years on Earth because of a field Galactus placed on it as punishment for his siding with the humans, the Surfer eventually was able to break through and get back out into space again in his own book. He was one of the original Defenders and has teamed up with just about every major hero in the Marvel universe.

His treatment in the second Fantastic Four movie is a polarizing subject. Some people feel he was treated almost perfect to character, while others think it was a horrible take on the character. Either way you feel about his role in the film, you can't deny they did a great job of bringing him to life. Galactus, on the other hand, got robbed.

Honorable Mentions: Doctor Spectrum and Rainbow Raider

The Squadron Supreme character Doctor Spectrum has to win the "Best of Show" title since he carries all the colors in his name. Of course, I guess Rainbow Raider would get upset if we did that, so we'll just say both should get their names in this list just because.

Rainbow Raider...heh...still gets me every time I hear the name. How on Earth did he ever expect to strike fear into the heart of any hero?

I briefly considered adding Crazy Quilt to the list because he used colors as his weapon, but it has to be the name or they don't make it. 

Guys I Missed That Should Have Been In Previous Lists:

Black Mask

Dr. OTR made mention of this fellow. Thanks again!

I guess he would have to be considered the "Kingpin" character of the DC Universe (though, ironically, you'd think he would be the Red Skull counterpart or something). A crime boss extraordinaire, he was a major force in Batman comics for a while and even played a major part in the death of the fourth Robin (previously the Spoiler).

He was eventually killed off and has since been replaced. He did pretty well for himself for a guy with no super powers to speak of. He definitely wouldn't win any beauty awards or anything, that's for sure.

Black Vulcan

Oh man, how could I have missed this one? During the 70's Super Friends cartoon craze, they needed to add some minority characters. We ended up with greats like Apache Chief, Samurai, El Dorado, and of course, Black Vulcan. Originally, they wanted to use Black Lightning for this spot, but due to a dispute with the creator of the character they ultimately decided it was easier to just make their own and move on. To my knowledge, he's never appeared anywhere but in the Super Friends show and comic book, and one other place I'll mention below.

He was able to turn into a living lightning bolt to fly and could fire lightning from his hands. But perhaps the greatest moment in his career came when he appeared in one of the first episodes of Harvey Birdman, Attorney At Law and created the catchphrase " my pants."

Black Widow

There may be two of them now, but the original will always stand out for me. Natasha began as a villain and hooked up with Hawkeye early on in her career. Soon she became a hero and spent a large part of the 70's with Daredevil, even becoming his regular sidekick in the series.

She was one of the charter members of The Champions, and has served as an Avenger also. She even spent some time with SHIELD for a while. She's currently the girlfriend and partner of Bucky Barnes and has helped bring this newest Captain America to true hero status. She's one well-traveled lady, that's for sure.

Black Cat

Felicia Hardy was a cat burglar who developed a rather unhealthy fixation on Spider-Man. Her love affair for him faltered when he wanted to remove the mask, however. She wanted the Spider, and he wanted her to love the Man. They worked it all out over time, and he finally chose Mary Jane over her (and then stabbed MJ in the back for Aunt May...but don't get me started).

How popular is this character? Go to any comic book convention and see which cosplay babe has the most fanboys lined up to get their picture taken with her. She has more fans than Lara Croft!

I'd love to see her fight Catwoman, but I'm sure the writers would give the fight to Selina over Felicia. I prefer to think it would be a pretty close match.

Red Raven

This forgotten character was a member of the Liberty Legion in the 70's during the Invaders comic book's first run. He was sort of like the Angel from the X-Men in that he could fly and fight. He actually did make his first appearance in the Silver Age fighting the Angel in X-Men #44.

To find his first appearance, however, you've got to go waaaaaaay August 1940. Red Raven was one of the earlier costumed heroes to appear. It wasn't the same character, but the similarities are too close to ignore.

The Marvel version of this character died in a battle with the Sub-Mariner.

Blue Jay

Another one suggested by Dr. OTR, this relatively unknown character has recently stepped back into the DC Universe in JLA comic books.

Originally created as a Hank Pym-type knockoff (his other hero identity is Massive Man...sound familiar), the pint-sized hero has one of the more unfortunate names out there. I can't think of many bad guys who would tremble at: "Oh no! Here comes Blue Jay!" He sounds more like a sidekick than a main hero.

Hey, if Blue Jay, Red Raven, and Robin formed a team, they could be "The Bird Boys"! Just sayin'...

And that's it! We've looked at colors galore and I hope I managed to introduce you to a few characters you might have missed. Of course, I didn't hit them all, so feel free to comment away on any colorful named heroes or villains you think should have been included!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Trailer Thursday: Superman Classic

This isn't really so much a trailer as it is an actual cartoon short (very short). The cool thing about this is the fact that the original Superboy from the 80's TV series does the voice of Superman in it! If it's not already pulled down by WB or DC Comics, here it is:

Monday, February 21, 2011

Heroes and Villains of the Spectrum - Black

I don't know if it's because black goes with everything, or it looks tough, or what, but black is definitely the color choice for character names. Settle back and enjoy this extra-long list...

Black Bolt

This silent leader of the Inhumans and member of the Illuminati has been around since the 60's. His slightest whisper can obliterate mountains. And yet he doesn't shoot any kind of bolts, nor are any of his powers black. So where'd he get the name?

Relegated pretty much to guest-star status in most comics after a very brief dual-branded comic title in the 60's, Black Bolt led the Inhumans for years as they protected themselves from one attack after another. Even moving to the moon didn't save them.

In the recent "War of Kings" storyline, Black Bolt was killed. His wife, Medusa, now rules in his stead. You and I both know he's coming back at some point in the future though.  

Black Panther

This character made it onto one of my earlier lists as one of those pretty-much useless guys who can't carry a title for squat. Still, he deserves a place on the list. He was an Avenger, after all.

Formerly the ruling king of Wakanda, he now patrols Hell's Kitchen for Daredevil while Matt's off getting his mind straight. After that, he'll disappear again for a while until some other writer thinks, "Hey, who could we bring into this title so we can sell two or three extra copies?" 

Black Canary

The eternal girlfriend of Green Arrow, this lady is one tough woman. She's an expert hand-to-hand fighter, and even though she's no Black Bolt, when she screams at you, you know you've been screamed at!

Dinah took over the role of Black Canary from her mother. Her past is pretty much crazy to try and follow, and her relationship with Green Arrow is equally frustrating (she even made out with Batman in the "All Star Batman and Robin" series). For now though, she's been an active member of the Birds of Prey since their inception and even pops up on "Smallville" every once in a while.

Black Goliath

Seen here fighting the most fearsome of all Marvel villains, Stilt Man, Black Goliath was a character who never really took off in the 70's. 

He got his ability to grow from Hank Pym, and made a lot of guest appearances in the 70's in comics like The Champions and others. It wouldn't be until the 80's that he would get a necessary reboot and a new name (as Giant Man).

His death during the Civil War storyline was the catalyst for the support momentum turning to Captain America's team over Iron Man's. Now he's on his way back thanks to Hank Pym and Ant Man.

Black Lightning

Another 70's hero who never took off no matter how hard they tried, Jefferson Pierce finally found footing as a member of the Batman and the Outsiders. He stuck around for the whole run of the original title.

Much later, Pierce would become a member of President Luthor's cabinet and a trusted adviser. He considered himself undercover trying to help the heroes, but the position did lead him to a showdown with Batman and Superman in the "Public Enemies" storyline (and cartoon!). He lost.

Black Manta

Aquaman's arch-enemy and constant foil, this villain has resurfaced (ha! Get it?) recently thanks to his son becoming the new Aqualad.

Initially, he started out as the standard bad guy that Aquaman would have to face. When the 70's brought us the cartoon "The Challenge of the Superfriends", Manta managed to beat out Ocean Master to be the resident "water guy" for Lex Luthor's Legion of Doom.

As they do with all characters today, DC brought him back as a darker version of himself now, killing without remorse and out to destroy Aquaman (again) in Brightest Day.

Black Beetle 

This mysterious villain has been in and out of the Booster Gold comics for a long time. His identity and true motivations remain an enigma for now.

Initially, he presented himself as a hero from the future out to save Ted Kord by reuniting all the Blue Beetles, but that was just a lie. He fought the newest Blue Beetle and attempted to convince him that he was a future version of himself, but I highly doubt that. More likely he will probably be revealed as either some multiple universe version of Ted Kord or Dan Garrett (the first Blue Beetle).

Black Knight

Dane Whitman is the latest man to hold the title (after his uncle was a villain named "Black Knight"). He's had a pretty eventful life for a guy with no superpowers other than his ebony blade.

He was a member of the Avengers for years, holding many roles. Throughout their many cosmic adventures he was able to hold his own. Not as smart as Hank Pym (who is?), he is still a brilliant tactician and scientist. Just recently he joined MI-13 with Captain Britain.

Black Adam

This "black sheep" (ha! Get it!) of the Shazam family has a twisted history. He was a hero in ancient Egypt who became a villain...who became a member of the JSA before becoming a tyrannical ruler of his own nation again...then a bad guy...then a, who knows?

He's been able to hold his own against Superman thanks to his magic-based abilities, but he has a mean streak that you wouldn't like to be around. This is the guy who started off the "52" maxi-series by ripping a guy in half (long before Sentry thought of doing that to Ares).

Black Hand

A pretty much obscure Green Lantern villain, Black Hand somehow became the key player in the "Blackest Night" miniseries. Geoff Johns was able to take a character who never really got much respect and turned him into a major hitter for a little while. The most interesting turn is where he is now in the stories (a Purple Lantern controlled by least he is at the time I'm writing this).

He definitely wins as the most painful moment in the "Green Lantern:Rebirth" miniseries. While trying to steal a GL ring and being stopped by Green Arrow, Hal Jordan shows up as the Spectre to punish him for his sins. The punishment: his right hand is turned to coal and crumbles off so he becomes his name sake...a black hand. Ouch!

Honorable Mention: Obsidian

Another tragic hero-turned-villain, Obsidian is Jade's brother and the son of Alan Scott, the original Green Lantern. He found his way to Infinity Inc with Jade, but eventually the dark side of his powers became too much for him to deal with.

After a brief stint as a villain, he's now pretty much an ambiguous figure in the DC world. He does have an awesome action figure out now though!

Next week, we look at the leftovers. We'll take a look at all the colors who just had a couple of guys in there and didn't warrant an entire list of their own. White, yellow, orange, purple, and the rest are waiting for their turn!

Friday, February 18, 2011

Batman:Odyssey R.I.P.?

Just got word yesterday from my comic book pre-order that "Batman:Odyssey" issue #7 is not coming out and has been canceled by the supplier. Not "delayed"..."canceled".

Does this mean the end of the Caped Crusader???

To be honest, I've been confused and underwhelmed by the series. I was so excited to see Neal Adams back drawing Batman again (and writing it this time), but the first six issues were a complete letdown. I don't know if his plans were to wrap things up neatly and nicely in the final six-issue story arc, and it appears we'll never know now. I hope he gets the chance to do it again, perhaps this time with another writer.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Trailer Thursday: X-Men First Class

I can't say I'm thrilled about this film. It has pretty much flown under the radar and with Thor, Captain America, and Green Lantern all coming out this summer I definitely feel it's the weakest of the batch. I do have to say that there are moments in this trailer that strike me as interesting though:

Ok, Hank changing into the Beast is a pretty cool moment, along with Mystique coming in there (I didn't know she was included in the lineup). For the most part though, I'm not blown away by this. I'll probably go see it though simply because this is Marvel's attempt to get more X-Men movies out there and I know there has got to be better stories out there to tell in the future.

So what do you think? Will you be going to see an X-Men movie without Wolverine in it?

Monday, February 14, 2011

Heroes and Villains of the Spectrum - Blue

Our next stop on the spectrum tour comes with the color blue. These folks think there's something cool about having "Blue" in their name...

Blue Beetle

Like Green Lantern, there have been several versions of this character. Focusing on the one who carried the title longest, Ted Kord was basically an athletic guy with a great sense of humor and some of the coolest gadgets on Earth. 

Hovering above the city in his "Bug" (a flying ship), he was the inspiration for the Nite Owl character in "Watchmen". His death at the hands of Maxwell Lord was a catalyst in the eventual discovery of the OMAC project.

Blue Diamond

One of the original members of the Liberty Legion, Blue Diamond appeared in the 40's for real as one of the earlier obscure heroes in print.

His skin was diamond-hard (thus the name) which allowed him to take a lot of punishment on the way to dishing it out. He still appeared in comics up until the 80's, showing up in a Marvel Two-In-One comic.

Ultimately, he was turned into an actual diamond to help preserve his body since he was getting so old and traveled through space with an alien. Back on Earth, now he's pretty much disappeared from the radar.

Blue Devil

This DC character has a strange origin. Originally, a stunt man put on the costume, only to find he couldn't remove it after an encounter with a real demon in a cave.

The character was originally played as a light-hearted Booster Gold type character, but that changed. The Blue Devil had his own series for a while, but has pretty much stayed in the background as a secondary character. As of late, he's joined up with some of DC's more supernatural crew (including Detective Chimp, who we never expected to see again) called Shadowpact.

He even made a quick cameo in the JLU figure line and has recently had a fairly nice DCU figure made of him.


Sally Avril wasn't around for long as a superhero, but she had spunk.

Originally deciding to become the official photographer of Spider-Man (until she found out Peter Parker had the job), she decided instead to become a hero of her own. She teamed up with Spidey a couple of times (not his choice) before he was finally able to talk her out of the dangerous profession.

Unfortunately for her, she was killed in a car wreck after giving up the superhero job while on her way to take more photos of Spider-Man in action.

Blue Eagle

This character was a member of the Squadron Supreme in their first incarnation during the maxi-series of the 80's. He had originally appeared as American Eagle before taking on his colorful moniker.

Unfortunately, his term as Blue Eagle was very short-lived. He was killed during a battle when Lamprey drained his wings of their power. He fell to his death.

Blue Shield

This character is actually pretty cool, though mostly forgotten.

He has the ability to create a force field around himself and others, and is currently the director of the Pegasus Project, a position held by Quasar, among others.

He's probably the coolest thing to come out of the Dazzler comic series of the 80's (his origin was told in issue 5). Hopefully we'll see him pop up sometime in the future, though given Marvel's treatment of their older characters it's probably best he stays hidden for now.

Next week, we look at the absolute mother lode of comic book color name titles: Black!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

The New FF...or "This Is Why I Write This Blog"

The title of this blog is the obvious motivation behind why I write it, and when I see stuff like the new Fantastic Four title (now minus Johnny Storm for obvious reasons), it just seals it for me. Here's why I think this one comic deserves a special weekend post of its own:

First: the costumes. They all look like generic heroes who couldn't afford real costumes. Is that a honeycomb on the chest? While the original blue suits were never that flashy, these outfits look strange. But that is explained by their new name...

Second: Future Foundation? Seriously? They sound like an old 80's Saturday morning cartoon series. Like it should be preceded by "Tommy Tomorrow and the..." or something. I can appreciate the writers were trying to keep the "FF" moniker for branding purposes, but they couldn't do better than that?

Third: Spider-Man? Between his own series and the New Avengers, now he's a member of the FF. Where do heroes like Spider-Man and Wolverine find time for anything else? And why not bring in a second or third-string hero that's not in other books to get a chance to shine? Without the Human Torch, they have no ranged fighter to speak of, so why not bring in someone like Stingray, or create a new Guardian from the old Alpha Flight suit and bring him back? How about letting Franklin Richards finally grow up and become a part of the team? How old should he be now...30 or something? I guess it's all for sales.

I have to give them credit for Spider-Man's new costume. Forcing him into the same generic suit does make him seem like more of a member of the team...but then we have to ask why? It's not like the X-Force suits that are meant to be camouflaged and therefore need to be black. These are generic white "Look at me!" suits. How is this a necessary change from the red-and-blues?

But I guess we all know this is just a placeholder until Johnny Storm comes back and we get the old blue suits back. But still, I can't say I'm blown away by the new FF. But then again, I was never a big fan of the originals either.

What about you? Is this a comic you're picking up, or are you passing on the whole thing?

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Trailer Thursday: Captain America

Of course, we couldn't let this one slide by. I'm sure you've seen it before, but just in case here is a look at the upcoming Captain America movie:

Monday, February 7, 2011

Heroes and Villains of the Spectrum - Green

Last week, we looked at the color red. We had a lot to choose from, but there aren't as many this time around. This week, let's look at some characters who choose to keep "Green" in their name...

Green Lantern (Alan Scott)

I suppose if I were to list all of the Green Lantern's out there we'd have a bit larger list, but we'll just stick with the two main ones for the purpose of this list. You might say I'm cheating, and I guess I might be a little.

Alan Scott became the first Green Lantern, with a strange weakness to wood that left him pretty vulnerable. He was a charter member of the JSA and due to several really weird occurrences was able to stay young pretty much forever.

Eventually he absorbed the power of the ring into himself and lost it altogether.

Green Lantern (Hal Jordan)

The latest hot DC property to headline a movie, there can be no doubt this character's popularity has dramatically increased thanks to Geoff Johns' dedication to him.

At one point in the 90's his title was on the brink of cancellation, but a villain turn to Parallax and the introduction of Kyle Rayner brought in a new bump in sales. Hal even died to save the universe in one final act of heroism. But it would forever be the "Rebirth" miniseries that began the upward trend. After years of teasing his return, Hal Jordan came back to the mainstream comics and has been selling strong ever since.

Green Arrow

Another "back from the dead" character (what is it about the color green that kills these guys?), Green Arrow hasn't had it easy lately. Aside from several seasons on "Smallville" and some of the most memorable episodes of "Justice League Unlimited", Oliver Queen has spent most of his time making one mistake after another. He and Black Canary have this love/hate relationship that may never really be ironed out. 

His most recent turn has left him living in a forest in the middle of Star City while fighting to get his company back. All of this after killing the villain who was responsible for his granddaughter Lian's death. No doubt things will turn around for him eventually though and he'll be back with Black Canary and with the JLA someday.

Green Hornet

It's might seem wrong to put him here, but he is a superhero and does have a comic book. Let's just ignore the profanity-laced movie that came out recently, the real Green Hornet was a hero who knew how to handle himself. Kato was the better fighter all along, but GH knew how to fight too when he needed to.

The old radio shows are the best, though the 60's television series comes in a close second. Seeing Bruce Lee tag  those bad guys always makes me happy. The Green Hornet actually had his own comic book in the 40's, at the same time his radio show was going on and a few movie serials came out. He's recently returned to comics thanks to Kevin Smith's script-turned-comic book and a few other series boosts.

Green Goblin

Guess what? This character died and came back! 

Norman Osborn became the Green Goblin and somehow was decided to become Spider-Man's iconic villain. I guess I can understand the fascination since he knew Spidey's secret identity and eventually killed his girlfriend, Gwen Stacy...but still, I'm not sure I'd have picked him as the constant villain for the character.

You can't fault the guy for trying though! He's been through everything and even became the head of SHIELD for a while, and still he keeps coming back. 

Green Lama

This character was one of the Project Superpowers heroes that Alex Ross has brought back to the limelight recently. I can't really say I'm in love with the name or even the costume, but he does deserve a place in our list. 

While his name might make you think his powers would involve spitting or something, instead he was a halfway decent crimefighter back in the early days of comic books. Ross has a slightly different turn for the character's costume and demeanor now, but you can still see where the inspiration came from.

Honorable Mention: Jade

No way, but yes, she came back from the dead too during the recent "Blackest Night" miniseries. The daughter of Alan Scott and one-time girlfriend of Kyle Rayner, Jade had the power of the Green Lantern inside of her.

Eventually she would become a casualty in the Rann Thanagar War, though her death was a lot shorter-lived than the others on this list.

Next week, we look at the characters who loved the color blue!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

TPB Review: Secret Six - Cats In The Cradle

Since the inception of the Secret Six, Catman has been the undisputed breakout star of the series. The dynamic between Deadshot and him makes the book a consistently fun, if sometimes over-the-top violent, read. In this collected TPB edition we are treated to a 4-part storyline that could be considered Thomas Blake's solo story. After his son (with Jade, the assassin who also had a child with Arsenal) is kidnapped and Jade is brutally beaten up, Blake goes over the edge to find the child.

This is not your typical father-in-distress story, however, because Catman isn't a typical dad. Rather than negotiate with the kidnappers to keep his son alive, he immediately considers the child dead and instead threatens the kidnappers with the simple promise "In the dark, I will find you." No negotiations, just the understanding that they have made a mistake that will cost them their lives. From there, Blake tracks them all over the globe, killing the kidnappers one by one before returning home to find the man responsible and deal with him. You thought Liam Neeson was tough in "Taken"? Catman makes him look like an amateur.

The key to Catman's appeal in this book is summed up by Deadshot early on. "He's never crossed that line the rest of us have crossed. He's never gone to that point of no return." It's as if to say there was something in Catman that allowed the potential of him becoming another Batman or something. In this storyline, however, he shocks his teammates (not easy to do when you're talking about guys like Bane and Deadshot!) and the reader with his complete and total brutality in dealing with the kidnappers. As such, this is an incredibly violent storyline that is not for the faint of heart. For instance, one of the men is dispatched by Blake literally biting the man's face off.

The point of the story is to show how this quiet storm of the team has the potential to actually be the most brutal killer of all. In the end there is one final redemptive act Blake does for his son that gives us a hope that perhaps there could still be a hero in there somewhere. The final two stories of the TPB are solo shots of the Secret Six kidnapped to an island where superpowered hunters plan to kill them (it doesn't go well for the hunters), and a single shot alternate universe type story of the team in the old west. I have no idea what that story has to do with anything, but it makes for an interesting distraction to see Deadshot as an actual gunfighter.

The Secret Six series is a hit-and-miss affair, but the 4-part story collected here is, to me, the highlight of the series so far.
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